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Our Industry

The combined health and community services industry is Queensland’s largest employer, providing jobs for 290,000 people or 12.4% of the state’s total labour market as at February 2013. It is expected to contribute almost one in four new jobs in Queensland over the next five years. These predictions will see a total of 52,400 new jobs in the industry to November 2017.  Nationally, further employment growth in the Industry of 241,800 (18 per cent) is expected over the five years to 2016–17.


It is estimated that approximately 58.7% of the health and community services workforce is employed in Hospitals, Medical and Other Health Care Services (health industry), and 41.3% work in Residential Care Services and Social Assistance Services (community services industry).


The health and community services industry:

  • Injects more than $17.7 billion (6.6%) to the Queensland economy each year
  • During 2011-2012 contributed an estimated $8.2 billion (8.8 per cent) in wages and salaries
  • Part-time employment in the Industry increased from 37.5 per cent in February 2012 to 43.1 per cent in February 2013. 
  • Employs more Indigenous workers than any other industry in Queensland, with 6,045 Indigenous persons employed in the Industry (representing 15.2 per cent of the total Indigenous population in Queensland).
  • The largest employment growth has been experienced in the Medical and Other Health Care Services subsector (421,100 persons) and is projected to grow by 19.4 per cent (81,500 persons) by 2017. Social Assistance Services is also expected to experience significant employment growth over the next five years, with an increase of 21.2 per cent (71,600 persons). 
  • Attracts volunteer and carer contributions, estimated to be worth $10.5 billion annually
  • Purchases around $2 billion worth of goods and services annually from other Queensland industries and businesses


The health and community services industry includes a large variety of sectors whose primary goal is to support individual and community well-being through a range of care, support, education, welfare and related services. These industries exist in every community throughout Queensland, providing services across the population, often focussing on meeting the needs of the sick, frail, vulnerable and at-risk members of the community. The following are just some of the sectors that make up the two industries:


Health Industry:

Hospitals, Primary Health, Oral Health, Allied Health, Mental Health, Community Health, Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Health, Alternative and Complementary Health.


Community Services Industry:

Youth Services, Early Childhood Education and Care, Disability Services, Mental Health Services, Aged and Community Care Services, Emergency Services, Counselling and Mediation Services, Family and Domestic Violence Services. 

  • Aged and Community Care

    Aged and Community Care

    The Aged and Community Care sector provides accommodation, support and care services to older people in need and younger people with a disability. Services in this sector include nursing homes, hostels, respite centres, home care and nursing services, retirement villages, independent living units and seniors' housing. Some services are also provided specifically for the carers of older people or younger people with a disability. 

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  • Child Protection Services

    Child Protection Services

    Child protection services in Queensland are currently divided into three service platforms. Primary or universal services, providing for all children and families; secondary services, targeted at families at higher risk or in need of additional support and tertiary services, designed to respond to abuse or neglect in situations where children have been significantly harmed or are in immediate danger of harm.

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  • Children's Services

    Children's Services

    Children's services are provided by a variety of private, not-for-profit and a small number of government organisations across Queensland. These range from small facilities with only limited staff, to some of Queensland's largest employers who operate many services across the state and employ hundreds of workers.

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  • Community Services

    Community Services

    Community Services represent approximately 42 per cent of the Health and Community Services workforce in Queensland. This sector employs approximately 122,000 workers as at February Quarter 2013, or 5.2 per cent of the Queensland workforce. Major subdivisions in Community Services are Social Assistance Services and Residential Care Services. Community Services comprise organisations whose primary goal is to support individual or community well-being and to meet the needs of vulnerable and at-risk community members.

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  • Community Mental Health

    Community Mental Health

    Mental health disorders are the largest single cause of non-fatal or disability burden in Queensland and projections to 2023 indicate that mental illness is expected to remain the largest contributor to the prevalence of disability until age 60.  In Queensland, it is estimated that in any one year, 16.6 per cent of the population is affected by mental health disorders. While up to 600,000 Queenslanders will experience mental illness in any given year, only a third have access to mental health services.

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  • Disability Services

    Disability Services

    According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics 17.9 per cent of Queenslanders, or just less than 1 in every 5 people, have a disability. Over 150,000 Queenslanders have a severe disability and require help or assistance with self-care, mobility or communication needs (Queensland Government, 2012).  Disability services are provided by a range of government, non-government and private organisations across Queensland.

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  • Hospitals and Other Health

    Hospitals and Other Health

    The health care workforce incorporates a range of vocations operating in different industry settings; medical practitioners, nurses, allied health professionals (physiotherapists, dieticians, occupational therapists, social workers, indigenous health workers, etc) and other occupations, working in hospitals and other institutional settings.

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  • Primary Health Care

    Primary Health Care

    Primary health care is commonly viewed as the first level of care or as the entry point to the health care system for consumers.  In addition, primary health care is increasingly being seen as all health care services provided outside the hospital. 

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  • Social and Community Housing

    Social and Community Housing

    The Social and Community Housing sector provides accommodation, support and care services to homeless and high need, low income earners throughout Queensland through the Commonwealth National Affordable Housing Agreement (NAHA). Although the size of the sector (including its workforce) is unclear, it has grown exponentially in the last few years.

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  • Youth Services

    Youth Services

    Youth services provide support and/or advocacy for people 10-25 years of age. This can include planning for youth wellbeing, early intervention and prevention services for at-risk young people, and youth support coordination services.

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